We bring together the community of people writing and contributing to research software from Nordic universities, research institutes, companies and other organizations to share knowledge, to organize meetings, and raise awareness for the scientific recognition of research software. This initiative is following the international network of other RSE groups at UK, Germany, Netherlands, United States, and other countries.
A growing number of people in academia combine expertise in programming with an intricate understanding of research. Although this combination of skills is extremely valuable, these people lack a formal place in the academic system. This means there is no easy way to recognize their contribution, to reward them, or to represent their views. Without a name, it is difficult for people to rally around a cause, so the term Research Software Engineer was created. We are now working to raise awareness of the role and bring the community together.
Some Research Software Engineers start off as researchers who spend time developing software to progress their research. Because they enjoy this work and have invested in developing specialist skills, they continue to focus on software and its use in research. Others start off from a more conventional software-development background and are drawn to research by the challenge of using software to further research.
The attraction of being a research software engineer is similar to that of being a researcher: the role attracts people who want to know how the world works. The Research Software Engineer works with researchers to gain an understanding of the problems they face, and then develops, maintains and extends software to provide the answers.
In 2018 we conducted a survey to learn more about people working in RSE-related roles in the Nordics. It was disseminated widely via national mailing lists and we received results from all Nordic countries. Results and analysis from the survey can be found in this repository.
Regardless of your formal job title, if you answer yes to many of the following questions, you are doing the work of a Research Software Engineer:
Content of this page is derived from text originally provided courtesy of the UK Research Software Engineer Association.